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Fatal attacks involve which dog breeds the most?

Dogs are wonderful companions for their families. Unfortunately, that doesn't always mean that they will share that friendliness with other people. A dog could attack a person for numerous reasons, even when it hasn't shown any past aggression. Certain dog breeds are more likely to attack than other breeds and far too many of these attacks prove fatal.

In fairness, the reason some breeds are more likely to cause a fatality may be due to their size and strength, but it is still important knowledge to have whether you've been the victim of a dog bite here in Mississippi or if you are someone considering adding a new dog to your family. A study released late last year showed which breeds are involved in the most fatal dog bite attacks.

Fatal attacks on humans by dogs

The study compiled data from 2005 to 2017. The top ten, along with the number of fatal attacks attributed to each breed, is as follows:

  • Pit bull – 284 deaths
  • Rottweiler– 45 deaths
  • German shepherd – 20 deaths
  • Mixed-breed – 17 deaths
  • American bulldog – 15 deaths
  • Mastiff/bull mastiff – 14 deaths
  • Husky – 13 deaths
  • Labrador Retriever - 9 deaths
  • Boxer – 7 deaths
  • Doberman pinscher– 6 deaths

Though anyone who owns a pit bull probably doesn't want to hear this, pit bulls are part of 66% of fatal attacks by dogs on humans. This is despite the fact that pit bulls only make up 6.5% of dogs owned by people in the United States.

Other research

Other studies back up these findings. When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at this issue around 20 years ago, considering the years from 1979 to 1996, its findings correlated exactly with the top three dogs on the above list – pit bulls accounted for 60 deaths, Rottweilers in 29 and German Shepherds in 19.

Though many people survive dog attacks, many more receive serious injuries that may require surgery, ongoing medical care or other treatment. In 2015 alone, 28,000 people required reconstructive surgery after a dog attack. Hospital stays due to a dog attack went up 86% from 1993 to 2008. The problem seems to be getting worse as time goes on.

I was bitten by a dog – now what?

A dog bite injury can be particularly difficult to deal with, even after receiving medical attention. It can be difficult to hold a dog owner accountable for the animal's behavior. However, there are ways to do just that and ensure that you receive compensation for your injuries.

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